Wednesday, August 15th, 2018
   

Abridged Report Executive Committee Meeting

 

Abridged Report with Attachments

ABRIDGED REPORT EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE MEETING

NEW JERSEY STATE FIREMEN’S ASSOCIATION

Wildwood Crest, N.J. Saturday, May 19, 2018

The meeting was called to order by President Frank B. Gunson, 3rd at 9:30 A.M. in accordance with the New Jersey Open Public Meetings Act. He notified everyone present that President Emeritus Greenwald was taken up to Atlantic Care this morning. He stated that notice of this meeting was posted on the New Jersey State Firemen’s Association website as required pursuant to the provisions of the Open Public Meeting Act (Chapter 231, P.L.1975) and sent via mail to all Local Relief Association secretaries.

PUBLIC COMMENT:

President Gunson asked First Assistant Secretary Genovay to read the Open Public Records Act. First Assistant Secretary Genovay stated the New Jersey State Firemen’s Association welcomes comments from members of the audience. He further stated that the secretary will note all comments and that because of this he asked that anyone speaking to state their name and address before speaking and to keep their comments to a 3 minute time limit. Concerns stated or actions requested by the public will be taken under advisement by the Executive Committee for investigation, discussion and possible action or disposition at a later time and date.

Vice President Robert Ordway led everyone in the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag.

Executive Committeeman Konrad Mellert (Warren) gave the invocation and led everyone in a moment of silent prayer for those who have answered their last alarm followed by a prayer for President Emeritus Greenwald who is recovering in the hospital and the victims of the disaster in Texas. He concluded by asking for guidance in this meeting.

ROLL CALL:

Roll call was held. First Assistant Secretary Jake Genovay announced that all members were present with the exception of President Emeritus Greenwald who was excused. Also in attendance were Past Executive Committeemen Thomas Miller, Union County and Kenneth Wigglesworth, Gloucester County.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES

The Abridged minutes of the February 24, 2018 Executive Board Meeting were approved as read on a motion by Mr. Scheuer, Sussex County, seconded by Mr. Florio, Union County. Motion carried. As Ms. Saeger was not present at the meeting, there were no verbatim minutes.

COMMUNICATIONS:

Secretary Finnegan read the Resolution # 051918 for Member Participation in a Cooperative Pricing System with the Educational Service Commission of New Jersey. This will allow the NJSFA to participate as a member of the co-op and be able to save money on purchases. The President stated that this will be taken up under New Business.

LIFE MEMBER REPORT:

None

OFFICER REPORTS:

President Gunson reported: In addition to his written report, he would like to report all Field Exams for the year have been completed. He would like to thank the Officers and Executive Committee members who participated. We only had four committeemen who did not participate. He hoped there would be better participation in the future. To date we have had five workshops with two more scheduled in June. They have been very well received by the participants throughout the state.

On Tuesday, May 1st we wired $10,521,000.00 to the Firemen’s Home and on Tuesday, May 15th we sent out $14,800,446.00 to the local associations. We have two that didn’t go thru due to incorrect account numbers and five were the routing number changed and need to be updated.

They are making great progress on our building. The Chairman will expand on this later.

Employment Update: Robin resigned on May 11th to seek employment elsewhere. We have hired four new employees and their starting dates have been staggered over the past month. Donna and Denise have started already and Brittany will start this coming Monday. Beth will start on June 4th. We do have additional resumes on file.

Oscar Dutch, Firemen’s Home, called and said they would like to schedule a meeting before the start of the Caucuses. They are working on the details of the new wing at the Home.

Over the past several months we have had companies closing or merging within relief associations. In one instance a career department was created in a local association. On many occasions this is not a popular association within the association. We cannot get involved in the local politics but must insure all our members remain covered. Currently we are working with eight fire districts in Hamilton Township, Mercer County that make up five relief associations. They are becoming a municipal department. If any Committee member knows of any company that is no longer in existence, you should inform the state office to keep our records up to date.

The Insurance Cap, the 12 ½% insurance monies that we spoke about last year, in talking with Banking & Insurance they have suggested we reach out to Taxation which we will be doing.

We will be bringing up under New Business the purchase of two new laptops, one for the President and one for the Vice President. Our laptops will become the servers at the cacuses. The current servers will become the laptops for the women at the convention replacing theirs which are twelve years old. We will also be a computer for those who work in the office.

This concludes my report.

Vice President Ordway reported: Written report distributed.

He congratulated the Executive Committee and their local officers for getting their reports in on time. To date, we have four associations that are not being seated for the 2018 convention.

He would also like to thank all those who stepped up to help at the Field Exams.

We have done a number of workshops and the feedback we are receiving has been very positive. We have two more scheduled in June and that will be it till after the convention.

Included in your folder is an analysis sheet showing various trends over the last eleven years. Use it as you wish.

Also included in your folders is a schedule of caucus dates and locations. Please review for accuracy. He will start looking for workers in June.

I have been working on updating the Secretary/Treasurer’s Manual with the goal of placing it online.

Tonight’s dinner starts at 6 PM, proper dress required.

Secretary’s report: Written report distributed with one verbal. We received a thank you card from the Kenneth H. Mikatarian family thanking us for our assistance for their father with the Health Care Assistance Program.

Treasurer Osborn reported: Financial reports have been distributed. He said that included in the budget in your folders is a $250.00 increase in the Death Benefit effective July 1, 2018 and a $100.00 increase in the Health Care Account to $700.00 effective January 1, 2019.

Field Examiner Kenny reported: Written report distributed. Included in your packet is the latest Relief Assistance Scale and the Financial Standing Report.

Counsel Cavallo reported: His report will be given under the Resolution Committee.

COMMITTEE REPORTS:

ADVISORY COMMITTEE – report distributed, no verbal.

BUILDING COMMITTEE – Chairman Dreby, Burlington County, reported that the last meeting was on May 5th. Roofing, masonry, carpentry and a/c have been completed. In the next few weeks they will be doing framing. They are making good progress and there are pictures posted on the website.

COMPENDIUM COMMITTEE – No report.

FINANCE COMMITTEE – report distributed.

FIREMEN’S HOME/MEMORY CARE – President Gunson reported that there have been no meetings scheduled but they plan on having a meeting prior to the caucuses.

HEALTH CARE – Chairman Mellert, Warren County, reported that the report has been distributed. Committeeman Hankins, Ocean County, stated that a meeting was held and it was discussed spouses in the program and it was felt that it would place too much of a burden on the program at this time as we are not there yet for the firemen and it was also discussed about alcohol and drug rehab and it was felt that there are other programs available to everyone so the committee felt that it should not be included in our program at this time. The Advisory Committee also looked at Maid Services and they felt that this should not be included at this time either. It was also discussed about possibly increasing the stipend by $100/month to $700. This has been included in next year’s budget and will take effect on January 1st, 2019.

LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE – In addition to his distributed report, First Assistant Secretary Genovay reported that A1627 and S1873 which involves people who retire thru PFRS, also known as the 180 day bill, has been approved by both houses with second reading which means

that the next time it comes before the session, it will be voted on.

PENSION COMMITTEE – met prior to this meeting and have nothing to report.

RESOLUTION COMMITTEE – Chairman Cavallo stated that they had a telephone conference call on Tuesday, May 15, 2018 at 11:00 A.M. to discuss the Resolution received from Gloucester Township FRA # 035 requesting the Executive Committee study allowing Life Members to make and second motions at local relief meetings. The Resolution Committee recommends that the convention approve this resolution to study the effect of Life Members being allowed to make and second motions at local relief meetings.

SALARY COMMITTEE – Chairman Dreby, Burlington County, stated that this will be discussed in Executive Session.

SPECIAL RELIEF – Chairman Mellert, Warren County, said that the report has been distributed. As you can see, there has been a substantial increase from last year.

WEBPAGE – Chairman Mazzarella, Middlesex County, stated that the committee has not been able to meet but have been discussing possible updates to the website which will take some time to do. Before he brings them to the Executive Committee for approval, the committee will get together to prioritize their implementation.

APPLICATIONS: President Gunson says we have one application that was an oversite. It is a career department that should have come to us in November. It is West Windsor that started a new company within their association. A motion was made by Committeeman Lenarski, Mercer County, to approve the application. A Second was made by Committeeman Dreby, Burlington County. On a roll call vote, the motion was approved.

OLD BUSINESS: Andy Mazzarella, Middlesex County, stated that at the last Executive Meeting held in February, we voted to write a letter to New Brunswick about not writing any checks till they come in the office. They have made an attempt to come in but have not due to conflicting schedules. He and Field Examiner James Kenny met with them and explained their problems. He would like to extend to the July meeting for the meeting to be held between their officers and himself and the Field Examiner. If one does not occur, he will recommend that they be placed Out of Accord. The President suggested working with them to resolve their problems.

EXECUTIVE SESSION – A motion was made by Committeeman Florio, Union County, to go into Executive Session for personnel matters for approximately a half hour and action will be taken when we come out of session. The motion was seconded by Committeeman Speigel, Cape May County. Motion approved at 9:57 A.M.

A motion was made by Committeeman Scheuer, Sussex County, and seconded by Committeeman Mazzarella, Middlesex County, to come back from Executive Session. Motion approved at 10:07 A.M.

NEW BUSINESS – A motion was made by Committeeman Mazarella, Middlesex County, and seconded by Committeeman Walker, Salem County, to appoint James Kenny as Field Examiner. Motion carried. Field Examiner Kenny thanked all for their support.

A motion was made by Committeeman Dreby, Burlington County, and seconded by Committeeman Lane, Passaic County, to appoint Frank Cavallo as Counsel and Stacy Moore as Assistant Counsel. Motion carried. Counsel Cavallo thanked the Committee for his appointment and stated he enjoyed working with the Committee. Assistant Counsel Moore also thanked the Committee for his appointment and stated he enjoys working with the Committee as well. President Gunson thanked them both for the work that they did this past year. Committeeman Lane thanked Assistant Counsel Moore for the briefs that he wrote in our defense protecting the confidentiality of relief applicants.

President Gunson asked Secretary Finnegan to read the Resolutions directed to the State Treasurer for the insurance monies collected by him from Insurance Companies foreign to NJ for Fire Insurance Taxes. A motion was made by Committeeman Phillips, Hunterdon County, and seconded by Committeeman Walker, Salem County, to send the Resolutions. On a roll call vote, the motion was unanimously approved.

President Gunson asked for a motion to approve the budget as presented. A motion was made by Committeeman Lane, Passaic County and seconded by Committeeman Kelly, Monmouth County, to approve the budget as presented. On a roll call vote, the motion was unanimously approved.

President Gunson asked for a motion to approve the $250 increase in the death benefit effective July 1, 2018 and a $100 increase per month in the Health Care Program effective January 1, 2019. A motion was made by Committeeman Figueroa, Camden County and seconded by Committeeman Walker, Salem County to approve the increases. On a roll call vote, the motion was unanimously approved.

President Gunson asked for a motion to approve the Relief Assistance Scale that is included in your packet. It is based on year end assets. A motion was made by Committeeman Mellert, Warren County, and seconded by Committeeman Scheuer, Sussex County, to approve the Relief

Assistance Scale prepared by Field Examiner Kenny as presented. On a roll call vote, the motion was unanimously approved.

Chairman Dreby, Burlington County, presented the Salary Committee’s recommendation of 2% increase in salary for all sitting officers and a 2% increase for the secretary’s effective October 1, 2018. A motion was made by Chairman Dreby to accept the Salary Committee’s recommendation. A second on the motion was made by Committeeman Scheuer, Sussex County. On a roll call vote, the motion was unanimously approved.

President Gunson said that you have heard Secretary Finnegan read the resolution to join the co-op purchasing program. We need a motion. Motion made by Committeeman Dreby, Burlington County and seconded by Committeeman Mazzarella, Middlesex County, to approve the resolution as read. On a roll call vote, the motion was unanimously approved.

An explanation of the proposed sound system to be installed in the new building was described by Vice President Ordway. It is called a Gramco Wireless system and will include televisions and a remote microphone system at a cost of less than $31,000.00. A motion was made by Committeeman Speigel, Cape May County, and seconded by Committeeman Lane, Passaic County, to approve the purchase. On a roll call vote, the motion was unanimously approved.

The President described the new phone system that will be installed into the new building at a cost of around $18,000.00. A motion was made by Committeeman Figueroa, Camden County, and seconded by Committeeman Florio, Union County. On a roll call vote, the motion was unanimously approved.

The President described the need to purchase one desktop and two laptops computers as explained in his report at a cost not to exceed $6,500.00. A motion was made by Committeeman Reeves, Cumberland County, and seconded by Committeeman Speigel, Cape May County, to purchase the computers. On a roll call vote, the motion was unanimously approved.

GOOD OF THE ORDER

Committeeman Lenarski, Mercer County, asked that the officers look into increasing the travel allowance for Field Exams by fifteen dollars. President Gunson said they will look into it and respond back at the July meeting.

Committeeman Lane, Passaic County, said on the Waiver Form that we use there is no heading on the form and asked that one be placed. Vice President Ordway responded that the Waiver Form online does have the heading and as the Secretary/Treasurer Manual gets updated, that form will be updated as well. He also commented on other forms which have been updated online.

Committeeman Walker, Salem County, asked for clarification on the proposed resolution submitted by Gloucester Township and was answered by Counsel Cavallo and President Gunson. They are asking for the Executive Committee to study the issue of Life Members voting at local relief meetings and that’s what will happen if approved at the convention.

Committeemen Florio, Naylis, Otterbein and Mazzarella thanked the officers for presenting the workshop for their respective counties. It was very well received at all counties and they have received positive feedback. President Gunson stated he would be remiss if he didn’t thank Committeeman Speigel, Cape May County, who initiated the Power point presentation over a year ago for his county and it has grown and been adapted for each county.

President Gunson reluctantly notified the Executive Committee that he will not be seeking reelection this year as he has health concerns that are being monitored. He recommended our support for Vice President Ordway as he seeks the presidency and Committeeman Hankins for Vice President. Committeeman Lane thanked the President for his leadership and the President received a standing ovation by the Committee and Officers.

Vice President Ordway reminded everyone that there are cards on the front table for President Emeritus Greenwald.

ADJOURNMENT

As there was no additional business to be conducted, a motion was made by Committeeman Minell, Morris County to adjourn. There were many seconds. All in favor!

The meeting was adjourned at 10:41 A.M.

Respectfully submitted,

Kevin B. Finnegan

KEVIN B. FINNEGAN

Secretary

We request that this report and all future reports be reviewed at

Your local relief meetings and so noted in your minutes.

 
 
 

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